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Wednesday, March 21, 2012

All Geocachers Should Learn From The Boy Scouts

Boy Scout Geocaching Merit Badge
Recently I did an episode of Geocaching World (RVNN.tv) about the requirements the Boy Scouts have to complete for their Geocaching Merit Badge.  To be honest I was so impressed with them I made the bold statement that all geocachers should try to earn their own Geocaching merit badge Boy Scout or not. What do I mean by this?

For a Boy Scout to earn the Geaocaching Merit Badge they have to learn all the key aspects of the game, sport and obsession. Next they must fulfill basic requirements with hands on techniques and finally they teach others what they have learned and become active members of the Geocaching community. It is an extremely well rounded program that demonstrates all the aspects of the game with an understanding of the environment and our neighborhood communities. In my humble opinion - AWESOME!

Let's go over some of the highlights. 

Understanding the differences between a GPSr and a Compass - learn how to use them. 

I am so into this, when it comes to geocachers who do more than just your standard park and grabs. I am referring to the ones who go into terrains that are off the beaten path and you truly need a tool to get from point A to point B. We rely so much on our smart phones and GPSr units when venturing out but what about the situations where they are no longer an option? Now what? Knowing the basic skills of using a standard compass and a map should be a requirement because you just never know.

Be Prepared.

The Boy Scout motto and yet so many geocachers go out into the wild not knowing what awaits them then wonder why things go bad and they are not prepaired to handle the situation. The first thing the Boy Scouts are taught to do is anticipate the environment they will be going to, understand the potential hazards and have the proper tools and equipment in case something happens. Just a case in point. When is the last time you even replenished your automobile first aid kit? Do you even have a first aid kit in your automobile? Good things to think about.

Get Involved

Several of the opportunities a Boy Scout has when earning his Merit Badge is to participate Geocaching including projects like making their own Boy Scout Travel Bug or host a Geocaching event. Tons of fun activities like teaching another Boy Scout Troop or local group how to geocache. CITO events are also encouraged which I thought was a great way to help the community as well. It is all good.

So as you can see even from this set of highlights that the Boy Scouts have the right idea and how everyone can learn from them on how to be actively part of the Geocaching family.

What are your thoughts?

You can see all of the requirements here:  http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Geocaching 


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